6.3.2 Buried (or layered): [See Figure (d)]
The rhizome is buried in a damp place, horizontally or
sloping slightly upwards from the rhizome. The best branches should be turned
upwards and others cut just beyond the first node (Storey, 1988a).
7. PROTECTION & MAINTENANCE
Grass and weeds should be cut if they start to cover the new
bamboo shoots. Care must be taken not to damage the growing shoots or
rhizomes, as this will cause death or severe setback.
Clumps take 10-15 years to produce culms of full size (Haun
et al., 1961), depending on species, soil, humidity and position of the
culm in the clump. Rhizome cuttings may produce mature culms in 3-6 years
(Storey, 1988a). Individual culms live from 5-12 years (Raun et al.,
Earth should be piled on exposed rhizomes as they are
susceptible to desiccation (Gautam, 1986). Manuring is beneficial to young
plants (Sharma, 1988). Young bamboos need protection from pigs, cattle, goats,
people and indiscriminate fodder collection. If damaged early in life, only
stunted, bushy clumps will be produced (Bahadur et al., 1980).
If a stand of Bamboo flowers and dies, the area should be
protected against animals and fire until it has re-established itself from
seedlings (Stapleton, 1987).
Local management practices seem to vary according to the end
product required. In the case of Bambusa and Dendrocalamus spp.
[bans] demand for poles is often sporadic and the harvesting of culms is
not always at the optimum age for maximum productivity. Farmers consider
containment of the clump important, to reduce interference with other crops
8.1 Harvesting Guidelines
The following guidelines should be followed:
i) Immature culms of 1-2 years have a
very high water content and shrivel up when cut - this makes them useless for
construction (Haun et al., 1961 ). Speed of development depends on the
condition of the clump and the position of the culm: if the clump is vigorous
and the culm is in an exposed position it matures much sooner; culms at the
centre of a poor clump mature more slowly (Storey, 1988a).
ii) In a clump containing 12 culms or more, at least 6
culms over 1 year old should be retained, and in a clump containing less than 4
mature culms over 1 year old, all should be retained during felling (Bahadur
et al., 1980). Mature culms should be left evenly distributed throughout
the clump to provide mechanical support as well as nourishment (Gautam,
iii) All culms older than 4 years should be removed.
iv) Culms should never become so overcrowded that they
touch one another at the base. There must be sufficient space between them to
allow movement of the cutting instrument (Sharma, 1988).
v) The culms should not be cut lower than the first node
above ground level, to ensure that the rhizome is not damaged and not higher
than 30 cm (Gautam, 1988). Thinning the clumps reduces rhizome overcrowding and
encourages the production of new culms in the centre of the clump (Sharma,
vi) Large bamboos (local name: bans] should
(ideally) be thinned annually during the winter, as this is the time when the
plants growth is slowest. However, it is possible to harvest at. any time
except when new shoots are developing (Storey, 1988a).
vii ) Damaged culms, debris and cut branches which may
have become infested with shoot-boring moths (family: Pareuplexia),
should be removed (Bahadur et al., 1980; Stapleton, 1985a) and burnt
(Storey, 1988a), as well as all dead and dry culms (Gautam, 1988).
viii) The smaller Arundinaria and
Drepanostachyum species [nigalo] are (according to local
practice) harvested by removing the shoots of a lighter green colour, which are
readily distinguishable in March (Thompson, 1986). Harvesting age should be
16-20 months (Stapleton, 1987). This leaves the clump uncongested and produces
culms of consistent size and quality (Lamichhaney, 1988).
The culms should be severed by cutting round once with the
blade of a hasya (a curved pruning knife shaped like a small sickle)
angled at 45 degrees to the stem, then again with it angled the opposite way to
produce a wedge-shaped notch. This avoids splitting the culm (Storey, 1988b).
Clumps should be harvested in such a manner as to produce the following pattern
This pattern allows easy access to the culms, while leaving
some undisturbed outside surface. The arrows indicate the direction the clump
should spread. Peripheral shoots should never be cut even if they are malformed
as they are required for the potential production of new shoots (Champion,
1968; Gautam, 1988). The tendency to harvest only peripheral culms leads to
congestion in the centre and extraction problems later on (Sharma,
9. TREATMENT OF HARVESTED CULMS
9.1 No Treatment
Cut culms can be left to stand in the clump until dry, or
they can be cut, stripped and stacked if the leaves are to be used as fodder.
Stacked culms should be dried in a shady, well-ventilated place, laid
horizontally on a rack, with supports every metre to avoid bending. When drying
large quantities of culms they should be tied butt-to-tip in bundles to prevent
the development of new curves (Haun et al., 1961).
Expected service life of culm:
i) When in the open on the ground - 1 - 2 years.
ii) Under cover, not on the ground - 5 years.
9.2 Water Leaching
Culms are soaked in water to increase flexibility and remove
starch (which makes them unattractive to Bostrichidae and
Lyctidae beetles). Leaching can be carried out before or after splitting
(Stapleton, 1987). The bamboo must be completely submerged, weighted down if
necessary, for between 3 days and 3 months (Pant et al., 1961). Running
water gives the best results as stagnant water sometimes causes staining to
Freshly cut culms with crown and branches are stood
vertically in a container holding preservative to a depth of 30-60 cm.
Transpiration draws the solution into the stern (Pant et al., 1981).
THIS IS NOT SUITABLE WHEN LEAVES ARE USED FOR FODDER. This technique is
unlikely to be useful in Nepal were the average farmer would not be able to
afford to buy chemicals.
9.4 Sap Displacement Method
Green, round or split bamboos are stood vertically in
preservative as for 9.3, but with leaves and branches removed. The solution
rises gradually to the top by wick action due to the replacement of
sap (Pant et al., 1961). For protection against fungi and boring beetles
dip for 5 minutes in a solution of 2 percent borax and 1 percent
9.5 Whitewash and Tar Coating
These are effective when done repeatedly (Pant et
al., 1981). Creosote can also be used (Sharma, 1988).
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